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Interview with David Teich

by | Apr 27, 2021 | Interviews,

David Teich

David Teich

Key Topics:Business applications of machine learning and artificial intelligence
Location:Washington State, United States
David A. Teich has four decades of experience in the business of technology. Experience in marketing, sales, professional services, development and operations means that David can help growing companies better understand and communicate the fit between their solutions and the market’s needs. He has an undergraduate degree in business computing (Texas A&M University), a masters in computer science (Stanford University) and an MBA in marketing (Pepperdine University). He is a Senior Contributor at Forbes.

How did you get to become an expert in your key topics?

I was always interested in combining business and computing, but it took a while to figure out how. In the 1980s, I became interested in AI for business applications, but that was a bit too early. My career remained in business software as I moved from technical roles to marketing. Finally, in the last decade AI began to move out of the sandboxes of academia and large, corporate, R&D groups. I turned my initial column’s focus from BI to AI and added Forbes.

What topic areas are you most passionate about?

The topic I am most passionate about is dark chocolate. However, within the industry, I am interested in two things. First, seeing where the rubber hits the road as to AI/ML solving real business problems. Second, reminding people that AI, regardless of its huge potential, is still a tool. It is not a panacea, it is not standalone; it is part of larger solutions needed to address business problems.

Which influencers influence you within those key topics?

Having a strong ego and a broad, real world experience, I tend not to have a lot of folks who influence me. If there’s one “standard” influencer I enjoy hearing it is Andrew Ng. As much as he has a strong academic background, he has enough of a real world focus to also regularly talk about AI as a tool. As for a dark chocolate influencer, there’s a little truffle shop not too far from me…

Outside of key topics, who else influences you?

I read so much, and there are so many interesting people talking about things, no individual name comes to mind.

How would you describe your offline influence?

My speaking and writing aren’t offline, and I network and consult almost exclusively online. I’ve occasionally covered company events with my journalist hat, and as a product marketer I’ve given presentations at conferences. That offline, direct communications is similar to my online work, as I focus on bridging the gap between technologists and the business community.

What’s your best source of information for getting ahead of a story? What resource do you use to stay ahead of the trend?

As I’m focused on looking at where AI & ML are having real impact on business, I’m not interested in being way out front. What academia is doing or which early startups have angel funding isn’t interesting. What I do is receive pitches from early startups, think about what I see as the opportunity in a horizontal or vertical market, see if they have actual clients, and then talk about where they think they’re going. That often gets me looking at things ahead of the business adoption curve.

If a brand wanted to work with you, which activities would you be most interested in collaborating on?

The simple answer is: yes. I love doing “stuff” (a technical term). If they want to hear me in a podcast, they can listen to it here. All of the rest also intrigue me. I’m a product marketer, I love talking.

What brands have you worked with?

I haven’t worked directly with major brands except through work with clients. I have a joint white paper on Nvidia’s site and a ghost written one on Dell’s site. Neither were my clients, but clients of partners and clients.

Which non-paid activities would you be keen to take part in if the opportunity raised your profile or delivered value to your audience?

I would be keen to provide a quote for content or news article, share or create a social post, speak at an event, podcast, online chat or a webinar. I am also interested in creating video content, although I am not a video creator.

What are your passions outside of work?

Books, walks, cooking.

What would be the best way for a brand to contact you?

By email.